Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Isla Isabel

From Mazatlan, we did an overnight to Isla Isabel with our fleet. Isla Isabel is a beautiful island in the middle of what seems like no where, about 20 miles off the coast. It has been named 'The Galapagos of Mexico'; it is incredible and is not.to.be.missed if you are cruising! On the island, you'll find frigate birds and blue footed boobie rookeries. Since there are no natural predators on the island, you can walk right up to them and they just stare at you, not phased or scared at all! This is what I called 'nature unleashed' as there are no zoo keepers to clean up after these birds, they are all over the place - new, old, dead, mating, etc.

The small dot next to 'A' is  Isla Isabel
Isla Isabel
T looking out at Isla Isabel
s/v Wanuskewin & Rhythm parked in front of one of the giant
rock formations off of Isla Isabel
Our fleet, photo from the beach: Wanuskewin, Destiny, Valkyrie & us!
Mike & Holly from s/v Wanuskewin
A view from the shore

Lago crater on isla Isabel
We hiked around the island with Holly & Mike of s/v Wanuskewin and ventured to the ‘Lago Crater’, the caldera of this extinct volcano. While hiking, we met a PhD student who was doing her thesis on the study of the blue-footed booby bird. She was there with several other students, for 4 months, studying their habits, their generations (each booby has an ankle bracelet for tracking) and more. We noticed the boobies picking up sticks with their beaks and looking as if to offer it to another booby (or in our case me or Holly, it was so cute!!) The PhD student told us that this is what is called ‘twig courting’.   Oh if real life were so simple….You’ll mostly see boobies in pairs, they stay with their mates for 1/3 of their lives.

Boobies everywhere!

A momma boobie with an egg
Boobies on the beach

Love their blue feet, note the metal cuff link on their legs, for tracking

Coral and boobies on the beach
A large male frigate, puffing his red chest

A baby frigate, as we hike by

T, with tons of frigates flying above and in their nests

Mom and baby frigate

Another mom and baby
A frigate perched on a branch
A male frigate and his harem

A toddler frigate
Geico insurance on the island? :)
A creepy crawler on our hike
The fishing village on the island

Crab/lobster pots used by the local fishermen

Not the best photo, but this is Tim's sailfish!
While on the way to Isla Isabel, I have to post that Tim, who hasn’t fished ONCE since we’ve been gone, in the wee hours of the morning, rigged up  our rod while I was sleeping and I woke up to him yelling ‘K! K!’. I thought he had fallen off the boat! I jumped up and he was reeling in a 5 ft. sailfish! With a a giant beautiful blue/purple sail as a dorsal fin – incredible – and a giant sword on its nose, we weren’t sure what the heck to do with it. In an attempt to string it up on deck to take photos with it (this is the kind of fish you photo and release), with the help of s/v Wanuskewin next to us, we tried and failed a few times. This thing was thrashing around and just wanted to go home. Since we have zero experience with a fish of this size and with a sword, AND we didn’t want to get impaled with the sword, we cut the line, but saved the lure!

We headed out the next day, as the anchorage was a bit rolly, but the fleet decided to stay and enjoy the island, spear fish and snorkel. On our way out we saw tons of sea turtles and humpback whales everywhere!

Leaving Isla Isabel

We arrived to San Blas from Isla Isabel, a great small little gem of a town (minus the no-see-ums aka sandflies! Little bugs that bite and make one itch like HELL!) and then made our way to Chacala…a darling little town that makes you want to do yoga and get out your boogie board to ride the waves, the instant you arrive! I'm putting the pics together now, wait for it :)

The beautiful sunset on our first night in San Blas


1 comment:

  1. Wow. Amazing pictures and looks like an even more amazing journey. So envious.